Special Forces Gear Logo
Monthly NewsletterJanuary 2011
In This Issue
Dave's Message
Voice of the Soldier
Word of Truth
The Blue Warrior
Warrior's Wisdom
Special Forces History
Aesop's Fables
Tactical Tipss
Embroidered Items
Featured T-Shirts
Special Product Coupon
Quotes & Jokes
Featured Items
Featured Tactical Gear
Featured Watches
Monthly Sale
Clichés of Socialism
What Has Really Changed?
Articles & Obituaries

Newsletter Archive
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
Customer Comments
I am a Cpl. in the Army and just returned from Iraq. I carried my shotgun all year on my back in your shotgun scabbard, and it worked great! I was glad to have it around several times, and it proved to be an easy way to keep the shotgun handy for the squad. Thanks for your great product, and for your support of our troops!!

Cpl. C.R. [omitted]
36th Infantry Div.



Got the T-shirt....IT ROCKS!!!!

Thanks guys
kelly [omitted]



Dear Sir, The Falcon Chest Harness finally arrived to me at Camp Taji, Iraq. Thank You! It is now set up for fitting over my IOTV and Battle Ready!!!

Thanks!!!
[name omitted]

(already the guys are asking who to order one from, so you might be getting a few more requests!!!).



Dear SF company.

Thank-you for sending another t-shirt it looks great the boys in the unit will want one when they see it. I'll be sending them right to you.

Thanks again.

Another happy customer
Bob Miller



When I was stationed at Camp Pendleton I was in Weapons Company 3/5. The unit made us t-shirts with the 3/5 logo/emblem/crest, "Consumate Professionals". I was honorable discharged in 1999 and the t-shirt has been long-gone. I searched a couple of web site to find a shirt with the logo/emblem/crest but there was no luck. It didn't take me long to search this site before I found what I was looking for. When the shirt arrived it was better than what I expected. I love the t-shirt and wear it with pride and often. Thank you SpecialForces.com

Most Sincerely,
Bryan P.



Thank you!!!

Your Shirts are the best.

Andreas



Dear SFG,

Thank you for being so prompt with my order, and the refund as well.

I thought a little constructive thoughts were in order.

The "HRT" boot knife is well constructed. I had to "hone" the edge though, both sides,to get it up to spec.

As for the "GI USMC Combat Knife"......Well, it wasn't really a K-Bar, at least not one that I've ever seen. It read "US", and above that it read "Ontario". No worries though, after I used a ceramic sharpening stone on both the small back edge and the full length edge, I'm quite pleased with them both. Oh, I almost forgot, both were very pretty well balanced.

I'll be purchasing again from you in the near future.

Sincerely,
Ed Whiteside



Dear Special Forces

I received my order i have to say that is better than i expected! Thank you and you'll hear fom me soon.

PARASCHOS



They turned out GREAT!!!!!! Thanks. I will be back for other things.

Rick



Thanks Folks. As always you have been most polite and professional. Best wishes for a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

Jack And Melanie Edgar



Steve,

OMG! That looks awesome! Is there any logo on the front? Can I buy these off the website? I'm sure a lot of SWCC guys are going to want these!

Thank you,

Amanda Van Every



Dave,

We love the art work. They are awesome. I'll be ordering mine right after this. Thanks for all the work. I am recommending you guys to all the other battalions and ODA's.

David



Hello,

Just to let you know all items have been recieved, fantastic quality as all ways.

Cheers Andrew and best wishes for the New Year.

Iwo AlwaysDave's Message
Happy New YearNew Year 2011

Every New Year brings its challenges and to help you start it I have selected the following to hopefully inspire you as face this Near Year.

Advice from St. Francis

St FrancisThe renowned founder of the Franciscan order, St. Francis of Assisi (1182-1226), advised, "Start by doing what's necessary, than do what's possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible."

Perhaps people need to meet the stresses of life in the same way, though we dislike enduring them. A stormy period in our life can be prelude to a new spring of life and health, success and happiness. That is, if we keep our self-confidence and faith in the future.

Fear of Failure

The African impala can jump to a height of over 10 feet and cover a distance greater than 30 feet. Yet these magnificent creatures can be kept in an enclosure in any zoo with a 3 foot wall. The animals will not jump if they can not see where their feet will fall.

Some humans are like this, not true risk takers.

How Can Bumblebees Fly?

In the 1930s a leading zoologist concluded, after careful study that, according to the laws of aerodynamics, it should be impossible for a bumblebee to fly. That is because its size, weight, and the shape if its body are all wrong in relation to its total wingspread.

Helplessness Can Be Learned

In cultures that depend on elephants for labor and transportation, it's common to tie untrained elephants by their ankles to a bamboo tree, using heavy-duty rope.

After three or four days of trying to free themselves, the elephants give up. From that time on they can be restrained by tying one leg to a small peg in the ground-something they surely could escape from with minimal effort. But at the least resistance, the elephants don't try to get loose; they have learned helplessness.

Reaching Your Full Potential

Flea trainers have observed a predictable and strange habit of fleas while training them.

Fleas are trained by putting them in a cardboard box with a top on it. The fleas will jump up and hit the top of the cardboard box over and over and over again. As you watch tem jump and hit the lid, something very interesting becomes obvious. The fleas continue to jump, but they are no longer jumping high enough to hit the top.

When you take off the lid, the fleas continue to jump, but they will not jump out of the box. They won't jump out because they can't jump out. Why? The reason is simple. They have conditioned themselves to jump just so high. After they have conditioned themselves to jump just so high, that's all they can do.

Many times, people do the same thing. They restrict themselves and never reach their full potential. Like fleas, they think they are doing all they are capable of doing.

The Hedgehog and the Fox

An essay written many years ago by the philosopher Isaiah Berlin (1909-1997) was titled "The Hedgehog and the Fox." It contained some very interesting insights into human behavior.

Berlin divided the world into two types of people: foxes and hedgehogs. Foxes pursue many ends, often unrelated and contradictory.

Hedgehogs, on the other hand, relate everything to a single central vision, a single universal organizing principle that defines what they think and believe.

One can conclude that most people are foxes . . . and that leaders like Ronald Reagan (1911-2004) are hedgehogs. Reagan had some singular ideas and never departed from them.

Wild Ducks

Thomas J. Watson, Jr. (1914-1993) who built IBM into a worldwide power in computers, loved to retell Kiekegard's (1813-1855) tale about a man who relished watching the annual flight of wild ducks.

Each year the man left feed near a nearby lake so the ducks would stop to eat. However, this encouraged some of the ducks to give up flying south and they wintered at the lake instead.

In time these ducks grew fat and lazy. Why bother to fly when everything was laid out for them right there?

The moral: You can make wild ducks tame, but you can never make tame ducks wild again.

After telling the story, Tom Watson always said he wanted to encourage "wild ducks" in IBM as an antidote to conformity and bureaucratic self-satisfaction.

BUREAURACY

J. Edgar Hoover with Tommy GunThe Boss Speaks!

The most famous FBI chief was J. Edgar Hoover (1895-1972), who ran the agency with an iron hand from 1924 to his death In1972. He intimidated criminals and U.S. Presidents alike for the secret files he kept on them.

One day, Hoover received a memorandum whose margins were too small for his liking.

In big red letters he scrawled an angry warning across the top: "Watch the borders!"

The next morning, his frightened aides transferred 200 FBI agents to border stations in Canada and Mexico.

Bureaucratic Reasoning

There is a story, which is perhaps apocryphal but which certainly could have happened, that the French police were chasing a criminal who fled into a building in Paris. Their first thought was that they would surround the building. But they realized that the building was so large, and had so many exits, that they didn't have enough policemen on the scene to do that. so they surrounded the building next door, which was small and had fewer exits.

Some Good Business Advise

Asked by Fortune Magazine what was the best advice she had ever received in business. Anne Mulcahy (1952- ), chief executive officer of Xerox, said it occurred at a breakfast meeting in Dallas, to which she had invited a group of business leaders. One of them, a plainspoken, self-made, streetwise guy, came up to Mulcahy and said:

"When everything gets really complicated and you feel overwhelmed, think about it this way. You gotta do three things.

"First, get the cow out of the ditch.

"Second, find out how the cow got into the ditch.

"Third, make sure you do whatever it takes so the cow doesn't go into the ditch again."

Mulcahy says this bit of advice has become a mantra at Xerox.

Getting Fired Can Be an Opportunity

The famous British author Somerset Maugham (1874-1965) used to like to tell this story. It was about a young Vicar of St. Peter's Church in London, who, discovering that the church's janitor was illiterate fired him.

Jobless, the man invested his meager savings in a tiny tobacco shop where he immediately prospered. He then bought another shop, then another, and still another until he owned a large chain of tobacco stores all over Britain. Altogether they were worth a lot of money.

One day, he dined in a fancy private club with his banker. After an elaborate meal, and over cognac and cigars, the banker observed, "You've done quite well for an illiterate man. I wonder where you would be today if you could read and write."

"That's easy," replied the man, "I'd still be the janitor in St. Peter's Church in Neville Square."

Late Bloomer

In 1860 a 38-year-old man was working as a handyman for his father, a leather merchant. He kept books, drove wagons, and handled hides for about $66 a month.

Prior to this menial job, the man had failed as a soldier, a farmer, and a real estate agent. Most of the people who knew him had written him off as a failure.

Eight years later, he was President of the United States. The man was Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885).

Where Character Comes from

The following is from a commencement address given to the Citadel Military College of South Carolina in 1993 by President Ronald W. Reagan (1911-2004)

"The character that takes command in moments of crucial choices has already been determined.

"It has been determined by a thousand other choices made earlier in seemingly unimportant moments.

"It has been determined by all the little choices of years past-by, all those times when the voice of conscience was at war with the voice of temptation, whispering the lie that it really doesn't matter.

"It has been determined by all the day-to-day decisions made when life seemed easy and crises seemed far away - the decisions that, piece by piece, bit by bit, developed habits of discipline or of laziness, habits of self-sacrifice or self indulgence, habits of duty and honor and integrity-or dishonor and shame. "Because, when life does get tough, and the crises is undeniably at hand-when we must in an instant, look inward for strength of character to see us through-we will find nothing inside ourselves that we have not already put there/"

Speed of Gossip

Someone has calculated that, if a rumor was started at midday in the office, and was repeated within two seconds by everyone who heard it to two other people, who repeated it - and so on, by about six-thirty the same day, everyone on earth would have heard it.

Semantics

Winston Churchill with Tommy GunThe same word may have quite different meanings to different hearers. This is not surprising when you realize that the 500 most commonly used words in English have 14,070 dictionary meanings.

In the Second World War, Winston Churchill (1874-1965) tells of a long argument in a meeting of the British and American Chiefs of Staff Committee. The British brought in a memo on an important point and proposed to "table" it-which to them meant to discuss it right away. The Americans protested the matter must not be tabled, and debate grew quite hot before the participants realized they all wanted the same thing.

Chuchhill and IKE Shooting


The Courage to Keep Fighting

James J. Corbett (1866-1933) was one of America's great prize fighters. Known as "Gentleman Jim," he defeated John L Sullivan (1858-1918) for the heavyweight crown in 1892. Here is what he had to say about what it takes to be a champion:

"Fight one more round. When your feet are so tired that you have to shuffle back to the center of the ring, fight one more round. When your arms are so tired that you can hardly lift your hands to come on guard, fight one more round. When your nose is bleeding and your eyes are black and you are so tired that you wish your opponent would crack you one on the jaw and put you to sleep, fight one more round - remembering that the man who always fight one more round is never whipped."

Why Rome Fell

In 1788 Edward Gibbon (1737-1794) set forth in his famous book Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire five basic reasons why that great civilization withered and died. They were:

The undermining of the dignity and sanctity of the home, which is the basis for human society. Higher and higher taxes: the spending of public money for free bread and circuses for the populace. The mad craze for pleasure, with sports and plays becoming more exciting, more brutal and more immoral. The building of great armaments when the real enemy was within - decay of individual responsibility. The decay of religion, whose leaders lost touch with life and their power to guide.

Making Decisions on Your Own

Abraham Lincoln liked to tell this story designed to encourage people to take action on their own initiative without waiting for orders.

Lincoln said there was a Colonel, who while organizing his regiment in Missouri, told his men that he would do all the swearing for the regiment. The men promised to obey, and for months there was no violation of the Colonel's order concerning profanity.

The regiment had a mule driver named John Todd, who, as roads were not always the best, had some difficulty in controlling his temper. One day, John was driving a mule team through a series of mud holes that were worse than usual when he suddenly filled the air with a volley of all-out profanity.

The Colonel heard about the transgression and he brought John to account for his violation of the profanity order.

"John," said the Colonel, "didn't you promise to let me do all the swearing for this regiment?"

"Yes, I did, sir," said the mule driver, "but the fact was that the swearing had to be done then or not at all, and you weren't there to do it."

Constant Learning

There is a famous story about Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. (1841-1935), one of America's most distinguished Supreme Court Justices.

Holmes was in the hospital one time, when he was over ninety, and President Roosevelt came to visit him. As the President was ushered into the hospital room, there was Justice Holmes reading a Greek grammar.

President Roosevelt said, "Why are you reading a Greek grammar, Mr. Holmes?"

And Holmes replied, "To improve my mind, Mr. President."

DISCOURAGEMENT

Devil's Secret Weapon

There is an old-time fable that the devil once held a sale and offered all the tools of his trade to anyone who would pay their price.

They were spread out on the table, each one labeled - hatred, malice, envy, despair, sickness, sensuality - all the weapons that everyone knows so well

But off on one side, apart from the rest, lay a harmless looking wedge-shaped instrument marked "DISCOURAGEMENT." It was old and worn looking but it was priced far above all the rest.

When asked the reason why, the devil explained: "Because I can use this one so much more easily than the others. No one knows that it belongs to me, so with it I can open doors that are tight bolted against the others. Once I get inside, I can use any tool that suits me best."

Don't Let Failure Discourage You

Many of those who have risen from failure to real achievement haverejected the rejection of this world.

In 1902, the poetry editor of The Atlantic Monthly returned a sheaf of poems to a 28-year-old poet with this curt note: Our magazine has no room for your vigorous verse." The poet was Robert Frost (1874-1963), who rejected the rejection.

In 1905, the University of Bern turned down a Ph.D. dissertation as being irrelevant and fanciful. The young physics student who wrote the dissertation was Albert Einstein (1874-1955), who rejected the rejection.

In 1894, the rhetoric teacher at Harrow in England wrote on the 16-year-old's report card, "a conspicuous lack of success." The 16-year-old was Winston Churchill (1874-1965), who rejected the rejection.

Don't Let Failure Scare You

From time to time, life as a leader can look hopeless. After taking a hard look in the mirror at your leadership, you may be overwhelmed by the focus on what's needed. To help you, consider a man who lived through this:
  • Failed in business in '31
  • Defeated for the legislature in '32
  • Again failed in business in '34
  • Sweetheart died in '35
  • Had a nervous breakdown in '38
  • Defeated in election in '38
  • Broken marriage engagement in '41
  • Defeated for Congress in '43
  • Defeated for Congress in '48
  • Defeated for Senate in '55
  • Defeated for Vice-President in '56
  • Defeated for Senate in '58
  • Elected President in '60
President Abraham Lincoln
This man was Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865)

The Power of Fear

Legend has it that one day a man was walking in the desert when he met Fear and Plague

They said they were on their way to a city to kill 10,000 people.

The man asked Plague if he was going to do all the work.

Plague smiled and said, "No, I'll take care of only a few hundred. I'll let my friend Fear do the rest.

How to Combat Panic

Once upon a time a young donkey said, "All you have to do is remember to shake it off and step up."

"What does that mean?" asked the youngster.

The grandfather replied, "Let me tell you a story . . .

Once when I was your age, I was out walking. I wasn't paying attention and fell deep into an old abandoned well. I started braying and braying. Finally an old farmer came by and saw me. I was scared to death. But then he left. I stayed in that well all night.

The next morning he came back with a whole group of people, and they looked down at me. Some of them even laughed. Then the old farmer said, 'The well's abandoned and that donkey isn't worth saving, so let's get to work.' I was going to be buried alive!

"After the first shovels of dirt came down on me, I realized something. Every time dirt landed on my back, I could shake it off and use it to step up a bit higher! They kept shoveling, and I kept shaking the dirt off and stepping up. This went on for some time.

"Shake it off and step up . . . shake it off and step up . . . I kept repeating to myself for encouragement. I fought the panic by shaking it off and stepping up. And it wasn't long before I stepped out of the well, exhausted but triumphant.

"So no matter how difficult the situation, no matter how bad things get, no matter how much dirt gets dumped on you, just remember-shake it off and step up. You'll be alright."

GREED

Whose House Are You Building?

There is a story of a wealth man who called his servant in and told him that he was leaving the country for a year and that while he was gone, he wanted the servant to build him a new house. The wealthy man told him to build it well, and that when he returned, he would pay all the bills for material and for his labor.

Shortly after the employer left, the servant decided that he was foolish to work hard, so he stated cutting corners and began to squander the money hw saved on personal extravagances.

When his employer came back, he paid all the bills, and then asked the servant, "Are you satisfied with the house?" When the servant said he was, his employer said, "Good, because the house is yours. You can live in it the rest of your life.

Question: If your life could be compared to a house, are you building the kind of house that you will be proud to live in forever? Are you cutting corners and squandering time, commitment, and effort? Are you giving it your best?

HELPING OTHERS

Kindness to Strangers

When he was President of the United States, Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) was riding across the country on horseback with a group of companions.

The mounted party arrived at a river which had flooded the banks during unusually heavy rains. The resulting flood had even washed the bridge away, so that the only possible way to cross the swollen river was on horseback. This would be an extremely dangerous maneuver that could even result in death by drowning one or more of the riders.

As the men in Jefferson's party struggled to ford the stream against the raging waters, an unmounted man stood on the riverbank and watched them with grave concern for hw he was going to get across the river with no bridge and no horse. After several of Jefferson's group had successfully made it to the other side on horseback, the man asked President Jefferson if he could ride behind him when he and his horse tried to ford the river. Jefferson agreed and the two men with some difficulty, made it safely across the raging river.

As the man slid off Jefferson's one of Jefferson's party asked the stranger if he knew who Jefferson was. And he asked also why the stranger had chosen him to ask for help on the dangerous crossing.

On learning that his Good Samaritan was the President of the United States, the man was shocked and embarrassed. Then he added, "All I know is that on some of your faces was written the answer 'No' and on some of your faces was written the answer 'Yes.' His was a 'Yes' face."

Taking Credit

On the desk of President Ronald Reagan (1911-2004) was a small bronze desk plaque bearing these words: "The way to get things done is not to mind who gets the credit of doing them." The author of these words was Benjamin Jowett (1817-1893), Master of Balliol College at Oxford.

Negative Thinking

Robert Fulton (1765-1815) in 1807 attracted a large crowd to witness the first full-scale demonstration of the steamboat on the Hudson River

When he tried to get the engine started, the crowed shouted, "It will never start! It will never start!"

When the engine finally did start and the steamboat took off with a flurry of sparks and heavy smoke, the crowd was silent for a moment-but only for a moment.

Then it began screaming, "It will never stop! It will never stop!"

Good Comeback

Ronald Reagan (1911-2004) was speaking to a student audience at the University of Berkeley when a student got up to say that it was impossible for people of his generation to understand the next generation of young people.

"You grew up in a different world," the student said, "Today, we have television, jet planes, space travel, nuclear energy, computers . . . "

When the student paused for breath, Reagan said, "your right. We didn't have those things when we were young. We invented them."

FREEDOM

Loss of Freedom

A bitter quarrel arose between the horse and the stag in the days when both creatures roamed wild in the forest. The horse came to the hunter to ask him to take his side in the feud.

The hunter agreed, but added: "If I am to help you punish the stag, you must let me place this iron bit in your mouth and this saddle upon your back."

The horse was agreeable to the man's conditions and he soon was bridled and saddled. The hunter sprang into the saddle, and together they soon had put the stag to flight.

When they returned, the horse said to the hunter: "Now if you will get off my back and remove the bit and saddle, I won't require your help any longer."

"Not so fast, friend horse," replied the hunter. "I have you under bit and spur, and from now on you shall remain the slave of man."

And that is how the wild horse lost his freedom.

Servitude is Man's Natural Condition

Adlai Stevenson (1900-1965), an eloquent American politician and diplomat who once ran for presidential office, said, "If freedom had been the happy, simple, relaxed state of ordinary humanity, man would have everywhere been free - whereas through most of time and space he has been in chains. Do not let us make any mistake about this. The natural government of man is servitude. Tyranny is the normal pattern of government."

Einstein's Sense of Humor

Albert Einstein's driver used to sit at the back of the hall during each of his lectures. After a period of time, the driver remarked to the famous scientist that he could probably give the lecture himself, having heard it so many times.

So at the next lecture stop, Einstein and driver switched places, with Einstein sitting at the back dressed in the drivers' uniform. The driver gave the lecture, flawlessly.

At lecture's end, a member of the audience asked a detailed scientific question about some of the subject matter. Without missing a beat, the "lecturer" replied, "Well, the answer to that question is so simple, I'll let my deriver, sitting at the back there, answer it."

Naming Something Doesn't Make It So

This is especially apropos to our day

Failing to convince an opponent that his reasoning was faulty, Abraham Lincoln asked him, "Well, tell me how many legs has a cow?"

"Four, of course," was the quick reply.

"That's right," said Lincoln. "Now suppose we call the cow's tail a leg, how many legs would the cow have?

"Why, five, obviously."

"That's where you are wrong," replied Lincoln, "Simply calling a cow's tail a leg doesn't make it a leg."

A Piece of String

General Dwight D. Eisenhower (1890-1969) used a simple device to illustrate the art of leadership. Laying an ordinary piece of string on a table, he'd illustrate how you could easily pull it in any direction.

"However, try and push it," he cautioned, "and it won't go anywhere. It's just that way when it comes to leading people."

Have a Happy New Year

HOOAH
DAVE

Some excerpts from "Wisdom Well Said"

Voice of the Soldier
This section is designed to give you a voice where you can express opinions or give messages. We encourage you to speak out! Send us your commentary, stories, articles, etc...


Special Operations Warrior Foundation

Special Operations Warrior FoundationSpecial Forces Gear is now hosting a special section for the Special Operations Warrior Foundation.

The Special Operations Warrior Foundation (SOWF) provides college scholarship grants, along with financial aid and educational counseling, to the children of Special Operations personnel who were killed in an operational mission or training accident.

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Combat Survival Magazine LogoCombat Survival Magazine CoverCombat Survival Magazine is a free quarterly e-publication with a focus on self defense, preparedness/survival and shooting sports. Subscriptions and past issues are available online at www.huntsurvival.com or by emailing comsurmag@aol.com.

Click here for a virtual tour inside the cockpit of the B-29 Enola Gay, the famous World War II bomber which currently resides at the National Air and Space Museum. This is really neat. The Smithsonian has done an incredible job restoring this airplane.

Enola Gay
DRAG THE POINTER IN ALL DIRECTIONS


Video of Submarine Rescue of B-29 Crew

Video of Submarine Rescue of B-29 Crew

An entire crew of a B-29 (12 aviators) was rescued by a US submarine after their plane was shot down in 1944/5 70 miles off the coast of Japan. The entire rescue was filmed in color video but then sat in a guy's closet until now. This is a story from a Denver TV station of one of those rescued aviators to whom the video was delivered. It also shows their transfer to another submarine that is likely headed back to port before the one that accomplished the rescue.

Word of Truth
The Word Of Truth
The Word Of Truth - Alive and Powerful
By Rev G.J. Rako
LTC (Ret)
IN USAR
 

The Word of Truth

By Rev G.J. Rako

LTC (Ret)

IN USAR

 

 

Peaceful Coexistence

 


Can Christianity coexist with Islam?  Biblical Christianity has always, and will always coexist with any religion, non-religion or anti-religion.  Unfortunately the converse is not true.  Islam will not peacefully coexist with any of the aforementioned categories.  All peoples (infidels) of the earth must convert to the slavery of Islam.  This conversion to their only true god is, has, and will be brought about by the sword.  This is the attitude of the Islamo-fascist.  We see the results of their thinking everyday on the news; homicide bombers, snipers, flying airplanes into tall buildings...  Islam is the religion of peace.  There will be peace on earth when all of its inhabitants have bowed a knee to Islam.  Only then will there be peace and this peace may be brought about by tyranny, brutality, murder, and intimidation.  Convert to Islam or die! 

 

Biblical Christianity, on the other hand, holds the freedom of the individual to do and believe as he wishes to be a mandate from God, as long as that expression of freedom does not interfere with the freedom, privacy, or property of others.  God does not force us to accept His great plan of salvation.  However, He uses us to spread the good news of our so great salvation to the world.  At the moment we become believers in Jesus Christ, God gives us forty things.  One of these forty things is our unique position as ambassadors for Christ.  As ambassadors for Christ we represent Jesus Christ to a lost and dying world.  We are commanded by the living God to tell others about this free gift of eternal salvation that God has provided to all mankind.  Whether they accept the gift or not is their business.  It is a matter between them and God.

 

One must ask who is Jesus Christ.  Is He a liar, a lunatic, or was He who He said He was?  To answer this question you have to know what the Scripture says about Him and what He said about Himself.  He is the great "I am"!  When Moses came face to face with the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, God commanded him to tell Pharaoh to let His people go.  Moses said "they will ask me your name, what shall I say to them"?  God answered, "tell them that I am, that I am" (Ex 3:13-14).

 

The Jews, for thousands of year's referred to God as "I am".  Jesus Himself also said He was the great "I am" (John 8:24, 58).  Indeed Jesus Christ is eternal God, co-equal and co-eternal with God the Father and with God the Holy Spirit.  He became a man, perfect humanity, born without sin as Adam was created without sin, so He could fulfill the Fathers plan of salvation (Heb 10:5-7).  He is the perfect Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world (John 1:29).  He accomplished this when He became our substitute and died spiritually on the cross for every sin that was, or ever would be committed (Rom 5:8, I Pet 2:24).  That is why the scripture says, "And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, whereby we must be saved, (Acts 4:12).   Jesus said "I am the way, the truth, and the life, no one comes to the Father, but by me" (John 14:6).  Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and you will be saved (Acts16:31).  There are so many verses that describe to us who and what Jesus Christ is, and how through Him we can have a relationship with the living God.  Know the Scripture and you will know Him.

 

Ambassadors for Christ present this glorious information to those who are without hope,   and without eternal life.  This is a privilege given to us by God.  God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ (2 Peter 3:9).  No where in Scripture are we told to force our faith on others.  God has provided volition (free will), to all members of the human race.  This means that each of us is free to choose for or against Christ, never under compulsion or fear of reprisal.  The decision must come from a position of freedom, and privacy (please click on my friend's web-site and take the test yourself, <http://www.eph289.com/>). 

 

We have enjoyed personal freedom in this nation since its inception.  The converts of Islam know nothing of freedom.  To them the freedom itself is evil and sinful and must be destroyed.  This is why they hate us and the west.  The only hope for the Muslim is faith alone in Christ alone.  But we can never force this faith by the sword.  It is simply not God's way of grace.

 

The question is not can Christianity coexist with Islam but, can Islam coexist with Christianity?  I think not.

 

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Blue Warrior
Blue WarriorBlue Warrior
with Sgt. Glenn French

 

Preparing to battle
Jihad Extremist
s

 

Preparation is key:


Earlier this month the NYPD conducted an anti terrorism exercise simulating an attack on the city.

A simulated team of terrorists unleashed a coordinated series of bombings and attacks around the city in this scenario. The exercise deliberately mirrored the 2008 massacre in Mumbai India.

 

The simulated terrorists teams also attacked New York police officials visiting wounded officers in a hospital. The exercise lasted most of the day and by the time it was brought to a conclusion dozens of people had been killed and many more wounded.


We in law enforcement have spent much time and effort preparing for an active shooter incident. Since Columbine we have learned tactics that are effective in neutralizing a lone gunman. In the past decade several mass murders have been stopped by law enforcement response. However, are we prepared for an all out terrorist assault?


NYPD is the leader in preparing for this type of event and what they learned from this months exercise is that there is still much to be done. NYPD sent a team to Mumbai in 2008 to gather intelligence and learn from the aftermath. They also have resources available to them that most police agencies don't. 


The dope on Mumbai:


Within minutes of one another on the night of Nov. 26, 2008, 10 gunmen working in small cells attacked various locations in Mumbai, including two luxury hotels, a hospital and a railway station. The attack stretched on for three days as hostages were taken at several of the location killing 174 people.

 

NYPD's training exercise:

 

NYPD's top brass gathered inside the department's headquarters in downtown Manhattan on December 3rd, in the NYPD Police Academy and a third classified location. Forty  senior commanders took part, and a facilitator introduced variables throughout the exercise.

 

The police were given a fictional scenario that began with President Obama visiting New York for a bill signing. At the same time, convicted Times Square bomber Faisal Shahzad was scheduled to appear in federal court. The attacks began with bombings in the downtown area that resulted in 18 dead and dozens injured.

 

The president continued his business with the bill signing at the World Trade Center site, when another bomb went off nearby. He was secured and evacuated to safety. The attack wasn't over. Six gunmen piled out of a van at Herald Square and opened fire on shoppers and pedestrians. They then entered the Macy's department store and took 26 hostages.


NYPD officers had trouble containing and anticipating the terrorists and their small cell tactics. Officers attempted to rescue hostages and were shot by terrorist snipers. Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly and the Chief of Department Joseph Esposito went to Bellevue Hospital to visit wounded police officers, then both were incapacitated when a simulated bomb exploded inside the emergency room.

 

Lessons learned:

 

The use of buses during an attack to shepherd civilians out of a congested city was successful.

 

The first responding officers to Macy's shouldn't have evacuated people and waited for reinforcements, the traditional response in a hostage situation. Instead, the police could have minimized casualties by quickly finding and killing the terrorists who were shooting people.

 

Maintaining floor plans of the city's large department stores and of the city's major hotels and many popular buildings are critical.

 

Training 375 officers for tactical response situations and arming them with MP5's and Mini-14 rifles proved valuable and are needed to counteract military weapons like the ones used in Mumbai.

 

When advising civilians to "shelter in place" many will still flee on foot causing more chaos for responding officers.

 

What does the future hold?

 

In Mumbai all the facilities attacked were soft targets. At no point during the attack did the terrorists attempt to overcome armed guards. For the most part, the terrorists attacked unguarded targets, and even in places where they could expect security forces, their reconnaissance informed them that those forces would be only lightly armed and easily overcome.

 

NYPD obviously has a duty to prepare for another terrorist attack and they are high speed/low drag to their approach. However, prior to Mumbai even the best terrorist intelligence officers didn't predict this style of small cell combat tactics. The point is this, terrorists have been changing their tactics since the early 1970's and the planners of any future terrorist attack are well aware of NYPD's preparations. They are also aware that they can get the same body count, press coverage and shock value at any large American mall, college, sporting event or celebration.

 

That means that much of the USA is a soft target and they may just attack a suburban location as well as any major city within the USA, which means you will be the officers responding to it!

 

Inadequate Training and Equipment:


To effectively manage a terrorist attack, first responding officers need to have appropriate equipment and training to neutralize or at least contain the terrorists. However, the Mumbai attacks demonstrated how badly prepared the Maharashtra police were to handle a major terrorist incident. Many police officers remained passive and simply allowed the attacks to unfold perhaps because they were outgunned by the terrorists.


Many officers had only been issued plastic protectors that were suitable for riot control but not for engaging terrorists instead of bulletproof vests. Helmets were of World War II vintage and not designed for modern combat, and most of the responding detachments involved in the incidents were carrying .303 bolt-action rifles similar to those used by the British Army in the 1950s.


American law enforcement is better equipped than many foreign militaries however; most of us don't get the training we will need to do combat with these militants.


The lack of training for American officers engaged in combat with a Jihadist extremist expecting to die while carrying out his attacks, that is well trained by Al Qaeda or other terrorist factions, is the biggest problem facing law enforcement.


I have no doubt that American law enforcement will gladly take on any terrorist willing to do battle with them and that may be the very reason we haven't seen a Mumbai style of attack in our country. Training for such an event can only further enhance our response and perhaps keep them from our shores.


"Lets Roll" 

 

These words spoken from a true American Patriot says it all. We need to learn from others failures and prepare for the inevitable. Train in the many tactical options available for responding to an all out terrorist attack. Seek out military style small squad tactics training, individual officer response tactics and everything in between.

 

Shortly after 9/11 my department started it's own patrol rifle program. I had the privilege to further develop the program in 2002 when the project was given to me. The first thing we did was add tactical movements to the training. This way these patrol officers would not only have the proper weapon system but have the tactics to go along with it. Our officers were trained in various options such as military squad tactics, the diamond formation and individual building and room clearing techniques. Today 65% of our patrol officers carry patrol rifles and receive annual tactics training.   

 

Equipping yourself with all the great resources available to enhance your fighting capabilities such as patrol rifles, tactical vests, helmets and extra magazines is probably the most important factor in your response capabilities. Push your agency to prepare for the worst case scenario by providing these essential items. What we have discovered is the extra equipment and training pays off huge dividends on the every day calls for service that can be handled more effectively and lesson civil litigation.  

 

Here's the deal, when the call gets dispatched to you and your partners because the terrorist planners intelligence indicated that a mall, college or any other location in your jurisdiction is a soft target then remember Todd Beamers words "Lets Roll" and send your adversaries to their desired ill gotten fate.

 

Good luck & stay safe,
Sgt. Glenn French


Sgt. French also is the president of the Detroit Special Operations Group tactical training company and founder of the Detroit SWAT Challenge. Glenn is a columnist with www.PoliceOne.com, and his column is the"SWAT Operator".

Glenn has instructed Basic and Advanced SWAT / Tactical officer courses, Basic and Advanced Sniper courses, Cold Weather / Winter Sniper Operations and Active Shooter Response courses and others. Sgt French served in the U.S. Army and is a veteran of the Gulf war "Operation Desert Storm." During his military tenure Sgt French gained valuable experience in C.Q.B., infantry tactics and explosive breaching operations and he served as a Platoon sergeant and a squad leader.

Warrior's Wisdom

Flexibility begins with Thought


One very important quality of leadership is the ability to separate people from their problems. This enables a leader to remain objective with the people he has to work with. Hannibal and General Robert E. Lee were masters of this which contributed greatly to their success.

HOOAH,

DAVE
Special Forces History
Special Operations Association LogoSpecial Forces History
with Charles Woodson

For this month's special forces history, we delve into the history of the United States' involvement in the Vietnam War, and how it ultimately helped us topple the Soviet Union.

However, even the best-organized force is no better than its support base. In 1971, legendary commander Arthur D. "Bull" Simons led a raid to rescue American prisoners of war in North Vietnam.

The Son Tay Raid
Son Tay Raid

Click here to discuss this month's message in the forum >>

Sunwood Entertainment LogoThe SOA has appointed Charles Woodson as their Personal History Project Officer. They have asked me to interview, over time, their entire membership. We have started with this past reunion, in Las Vegas to interview the first group. This coming September 13th through the 17th we will be interviewing the second group. The stories, needless to say, are  incredible!

We are looking for support in this huge effort. So any interested parties can contact me at my email address I can provide additional information.

 

 ADDITIONAL SOF History :

 

U.S. and Canadian forces celebrate annual First SSF Menton Week

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. (USASOC News Service, Dec. 10, 2010) - Members of 1st Special Forces Group (Airborne) and the Canadian Special Operations Regiment celebrated its 26th annual Menton Week on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., Nov. 30-Dec. 3 Read More


 FSSF march


Aesop's Fables

An Aesop's Fable...

A wolf who had a bone stuck in his throat hired a Crane for a large sum, to put her head into his mouth and draw out the bone. When the Crane had extracted the bone and demanded the promised payment, the Wolf, grinning and grinding his teeth, exclaimed: "Why, you have surly already had sufficient recompense, in having been permitted to draw out your head in safety from the mouth and jaws of a wolf."

In serving the wicked, expect no reward, and be thankful if you escape injury for your pains.
 Tactical Tips

Tactical Tips


Tactical Tips For Extreme Icy Polar Weather


Since a good percentage of you maybe finding yourselves into the not so tropical regions this January, such as any OCONUS territory with a 'stan' in its name and the better than good chance of a 'Korean War Redux ' on the horizon, take heed the following advice:

'A MAN SITS ON AS MANY RISKS as he runs...The amount of it is, if a man is alive there is always danger he may die.'
~David Thoreau as intrepreted by a wise-ol' polar survival expert named Bradford Angier.


Ice. Wind. Snow. Together as lethal as any wave of North Koreans rolling on you, that you could imagine

10th SF skier


Upon falling through Ice in to water...
  • Always carry a tactical fixed blade sheath knife in sub zero conditions where ice which is ALWAYS thin has a high probability of existing. Tactical folders are great but often the one extra finger motion while submerged to extract it, defies the ability to draw and activate it open to do what one thumb and yank can do to have your fixed blade used in the immediate chance to drive the point into solid ice and with its aid to roll yourself out and away from danger. Many varied manufacturers produce solid blades that are great for this sort of thing....A Cumbersome addition in a standard winter patrol load-out? Yes, but a tried and true aide for centuries of Arctic/Alpine/Tundra warriors who need a life saver in a pinch.
     
  • Another method is if quick to react with immediate thought when falling through Ice is to reach out to the fullest extent of your arms and bring down your wet sleeves and gloves down on firm Ice, where if temperatures are low enough they will almost instantly freeze.
     
To dry off...
  • Roll quickly in dry snow to absorb water
  • ALWAYS travel with a ruck or butt pack or go bag liner: Change out socks and gloves immediately
  • Dry out your boots 
and...
  • When at all possible engage enemy from the comfort of your long range sniper hide and don't fall through ice!
  • Build fire inside wind break to get warmth before you become to numb
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Quotes & Jokes
The OSS is Dead... Long live the OSS! " ~ Marge Kennedy and frank Bessac, OSS and CIA Colleagues -- to each other , 1947

"Staff Sgt. Kevin Pape had two priorities in his life - his family and the Rangers he led...Kevin was literally the lead Ranger in a heavy firefight against a large number of Taliban in some of the most rugged and extreme terrain in Afghanistan. By the manner in which he lived his life, Staff Sgt. Pape defined sacrifice, dedication, and selfless service."

"Thank God that we have those folks who are serving for us today, thank God that this country still produces those types of people...Thank God this country has you, and thank God for the United States of America."~Medal of Honor awardee and former Navy SEAL Lt . Tom Norris, speaking at the dedication of the wall of names at the National UDT / SEAL Mueseum ,Nov. 6th 2010
FALLEN SEALS

FSSF jumpANYTHING Anti Liberty anti -'pro' USA, or Globalist bru-hah-hah!

"There are only a very few of us left.... I feel for them because they are combat Soldiers and attend dangerous missions.... The last time I was here, I had to pin wings on these guys and it brought tears to my eyes just talking about it, because a lot of these guys are not going to come back." ~said Stanley McEtchin, at a Decemeber 5th Rally at joint base Lewis-McChord Washington honoring he and his comrades who served in several roles in both the Canadian and American Army, to include time in the Joint Candaian U.S.A. First Special Serivice Force [ Devils Brigade] of WW II...one of the pioneering special forces units whose legacy is today's US Special Forces

This old story out of Texas. Seems an old retired Special Forces Soldier makes a rolling stop at a stop sign and gets pulled over by a local policeman. Guy hands the cop his driver's license, insurance verification, plus his concealed carry permit.

"Okay, Mr. Smith," the cop says, "I see your CCW permit. Are you carrying today?"

"Yes, I am."

"Well then, better tell me what you got."

Smith says, "Well, I got a .357 revolver in my inside coat pocket. There's a 9mm semi-auto in the glove box. And, I've got a .22 magnum derringer in my right boot."

"Okay," the cop says. "Anything else?"

"Yeah, back in the trunk, there's an AR15 and a shotgun. That's about it."

"Mr. Smith, are you on your way to or from a gun range...?"

"Nope."

"Well then, what are you afraid of...?"

"Not a goddamned thing..."
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Petty Officer Ed reflects on some experiences that enforce preparedness. One time during a power outage on base that lasted a day with no warning and no idea what was going on, he luckily had a standby reserve of flashlights, water, and food ready to go for my wife and my dog. It was a real eye opener everyone was just bugging out to hotels and everything. He just hunkered down until power came back on, no point in spending more money in a panic. It was just a power outage, not like anyone couldn't drink some bottled water, and make something to eat...

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Clichés of Socialism

Clichés of Socialism


"Labor unions are too powerful today,
but were useful in the past."


To believe that labor unions actually improve the lot of the working people is to admit that the capitalist economy fails to provide fair wages and decent working conditions. It is to admit that our free economy does not work satisfactorily unless it is "fortified" by union activity and government intervention.

The truth is that the unhampered market society allocates to every member the undiminished fruits of his labor. It does so in all ages and societies where individual freedom and private property are safeguarded. It did so 1,900 years ago in Rome, in eighteenth-century England, and in nineteenth-century America.

The reason grandfather earned $5 a week for 60 hours of labor must be sought in his low productivity, not in the absence of labor unions. The $5 he earned constituted full and fair payment for his productive efforts. The economic principles of the free market, the competition among employers, a man's mobility and freedom of choice, assured him full wages under the given production conditions.
What Has Really Changed?

What Has Really Changed?


That "more abundant life"

1953


It wasn't so long ago that many Americans were pushing for government ownership of the means of production. And they'll be at it again-"for the good of the workingman" they always say so piously.

Well, how does the workingman get along under government ownership, compared to his lot with private ownership of business-for-profit?

In Moscow, in 1953, it takes 25 times as long to earn a pound of sugar as it takes in New York.

22 times as long to earn a shirt, 6 times as long to earn a quart of milk for a child, 21 times as long to earn a pound of tea, 11 times as long to earn a cake of soap.

All the words in the world, all the slogans and "isms" can never change those changeless facts-the opportunity for profit is the only thing which ever improves products and the standard of living-the only thing which ever gives the efficient workingman more and more of the good things of life for less and less work.

Then why change it, when every change is always for the worse.

Articles & Obituaries
SOCOM Marine receives Legion of Merit for outstanding service in Afghanistan

Approximately 40 service members and civilians gathered at the Special Operations Forces Memorial to watch Marine Lt. Col. David L. Odom receive a Legion of Merit medal during a ceremony at MacDill Air Force Base, Fla., Dec. 3.

Read More

OLSOn At Ft Pierce MusterPast, present, possible future SEALs celebrate 25th annual muster

On a brisk November day, two Humvees speed into an open field as two MH-60 helicopters swiftly approach an empty lot nearby. The MH-60s pause and hover 40 feet above the concrete as a thick rope is dropped out the door.

Read More


Preqaul SwimSpecial Forces dive into training

JOINT BASE LEWIS-McCHORD, Wash. (USASOC News Service, Dec. 14, 2010) - Soldiers from 1st Special Forces Group participated in pre-Combat Divers Qualification Course Preqaul Swimtraining the past two weeks at JBLM. The pre-CDQC class room and physical training gives soldiers a head start on what to expect during the main CDQC course in Key West, Fla. Soldiers who pass CDQC earn the right to call themselves Combat Divers.

Read More

3rd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment conducts live fire training

FORT BENNING, Ga. (USASOC News Service, Dec. 15, 2010) - In preparation for deployment, Rangers of 3rd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment recently conducted a live fire training exercise utilizing Fort Benning's new Digital Multipurpose Range Complex.

There are a number of benefits to training on this range according to Lt. Col. Mark O'Donnell, 3rd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment battalion commander.

"In a lot of cases, our Rangers have seen most of the ranges on Fort Benning and the DMPRC is one range that nobody has seen before," said O'Donnell. "This is the first time our platoons have ever been on this range and in a lot of ways it's going to challenge them as leaders."

Read More

SEALs Bike America riders complete 3,300-mile, 42-day journey

SEALs bikeSix cyclists from the Naval Special Warfare Foundation charity bike ride, "SEALs Bike America," arrived at the National Navy UDT-SEAL Museum in Fort Pierce, Fla., Nov. 6, completing their 42-day ride from Coronado, Calif.

Read More

capersForce Recon Marines awarded for valor 43 years later

MacDill AFB, Florida, USA - Five Marines and a Navy corpsman who served with 3rd Force Reconnaissance Company, 3rd Reconnaissance Battalion, 3rd Marine Division in Vietnam were recognized with awards for valor in combat operations conducted more than 43 years ago during a ceremony at the MacDill Air Force Base officers club Oct. 27.

Retired Maj. James Capers was awarded the Silver Star Medal, the nation's third highest award for valor, for his actions as a patrol leader during a reconnaissance mission in which his team, codenamed "Broadminded," supported Company M, 3rd Battalion, 26th Marine Regiment, during a sear

Read More

LightfootPre SCUBA Soldier passes away at Womack

FORT BRAGG, N.C. (USASOC News Service, Dec. 16, 2010) - U.S. Army Capt. Juan E. Lightfoot, 34, died at Womack Army Medical Center on Fort Bragg, Sunday, Dec. 12, following an accident during unit pre-scuba training several days earlier.

Lightfoot was a Special Forces detachment commander assigned to Co. C, 2nd Bn., 7th Special Forces Group (Airborne). He was a native of Elmont, N.Y.

Read More

PapeU.S. Army Ranger killed in combat

Staff Sgt. Kevin Matthew Pape was assigned to Co. C, 1st Bn., 75th Ranger Regiment, at Hunter Army Airfield, PapeGa.

Pape, a native of Fort Wayne, Ind., was killed by enemy forces while conducting combat operations in Konar Province, Afghanistan.

Read More

BessacFrank Bessac

Frank Bessac, who died on December 6 aged 88, was one of two survivors of an epic and ill-fated trip led by the CIA in the early days of the Cold War which took him from the borders of Mongolia to the Tibetan capital Lhasa amid Great Game-style efforts to stymie communists both in China and in Russia.

WW II Cavalry man and OSS China Spy, turned anthropologist who made an epic journey to Tibet as a CIA Officer to foil the Russian A-Bomb and Chinese communists.

Read More

MooreCaptain John Moore 

Captain John Moore, who has died aged 88, was editor of Jane's Fighting Ships and helped develop the covert landing techniques of the British Royal Marines elite Special Boat Service( SBS).

During the Second World War Moore had experienced at first hand the difficulty of landing men from submarines and the submariner's dislike of entering shallow water. He determined to do something about these problems when in Singapore during the Confrontation between Malaysia and Indonesia between 1962 and 1966, taking a special interest in the operations of the Special Boat Service.

By 1965 "Goldfish", an underwater method of leaving and re-entering submarines, was under development by the Navy in the Far East. The technique was based on the experience during the Second World War of the midget submarines known as X-craft; but Moore took this further, inventing a homing device called "Trongle" which enabled swimmers to find their parent boat at night.

Next he converted a Mark 20 torpedo ("a useless device for its original task") to become an underwater delivery vehicle which he called Archimedes, and he experimented with this with the then 2nd Lieutenant Paddy Ashdown, RM.

Moore also adapted a Polaroid camera to take reconnaissance photographs through submarine periscopes, and eventually perfected a technique whereby special forces could be parachuted to a waiting sub, collect their gear and proceed to their targets.

Read More

Charlie Boyce

Charlie Boyce, who died on November 21 aged 95, was one of a few Brits living to have have worn the badge of the Reconnaissance Regiment, with which he won an immediate, and unusual, British DCM, in 1945 from field Marshall Montgomery.

Read More

Scouts and Raiders debut in Morocco, Algeria invasion
By Tom Neven
USSOCOM History Office

S R

A precursor to today's Navy SEALs first saw action 67 years ago during Operation Torch, the Allies' Nov. 8, 1942,invasion of northwest Africa, where a joint Army-Navyunit called Scouts and Raiders helped guide American andBritish forces ashore in Morocco and Algeria to open asecond front against Nazi Germany.

In the 1920s and 1930s military planners had come to understand that any future war would likely involve amphibious operations, so, in January 1941 the War Department established a joint Army- Marine Corps unit called the Observer Group under the command of Army 1st Lt. Lloyd Peddicord. Their job was to develop the tactics and techniques for reconnoitering a hostile shore and guiding in an invasion force. The Group pioneered the use of submarine-launched patrols using inflatable rubber boats after testing and rejecting kayaks and folding canvas boats. Sometimes they had to improvise their equipment. For example, they determined that the Navy's shipboard damage-control light was best to use for infrared signaling. Of course, the light wasn't made for IR use, so they improvised by taping IR paper to the outside of the lens. 

By mid-1942, Marine members of the Observer Group were pulled away to concentrate on the Pacific Theater, where they would form the Amphibious Reconnaissance Company. The existing unit was dubbed the Scouts and Raiders and given to the Navy under Rear Adm. H.K. Hewitt, commander of Amphibious Forces Atlantic. Their mission under Force General Order 1-43 was to perform reconnaissance of hostile beaches, including hydrographic conditions; carry out shortduration and small-scale inland raids; land special groups on hostile shores; and rendezvous with submarines for updated intelligence.

In August 1942 Scouts and Raiders set up training operations at the newly commissioned Amphibious Training Base Little Creek, nicknamed "the mud hole" because of its primitive conditions. (That first group of trainees included Phil Bucklew, the "father of U.S. Navy Special Warfare.")

A history of those early days read:

We trained at Little Creek at night, studying shorelines as night fell, looking for clumps of trees, church steeples, any marker ashore, judging distances, and how long it took to get from one point to another. We were given a compass bearing to sea, say four miles, then another back to shore. If we judged speed and distance correctly, we landed our Army team on the proper beach at the right time. We came up with a game to see which crew could land its rubber boat team at the right point first to recover the object that had been placed there previously, e.g., an orange, with crews being given different dropoff points each night.
 

During a final full-dress rehearsal for Torch conducted in the Chesapeake Bay in October 1942, a Scouts and Raiders team was able to get close enough to "kill" a startled but appreciative Gen. George Patton, who gave the men an impromptu pep talk.

The Scouts and Raiders quickly proved their value during the initial hours of Torch. Ensign John Bell and his scout-boat crew redirected the destroyer USS Bernadou as it sailed off-course toward Safi harbor south of Casablanca, saving it from crashing into a breakwater. They remained on station to guide waves of assault boats, which had followed Bernadou on its errant heading.

BucklewThe team headed by Capt. Peddicord was tasked with keeping landing craft from hitting the jetties of the Sebou River and landing a special assault team to cut the boom and nets blocking the entrance to the river to facilitate an assault inland by Army Rangers. Despite coming under fire from Vichy French forces, Peddicord's boat held its position until the entire assault force was ashore. Not everything went smoothly.  A boat team led by 1st Lt. Willard Duckworth was supposed to be dropped off by the submarine USS Barb three-and-a-half miles from Safi, but the sub's skipper would not let Duckworth conduct a preliminary recon by periscope to determine position. Duckworth's crew wound up paddling for more than six hours, meaning, according to Duckworth's calculations, they'd been deposited no less than seven miles offshore and nowhere near their assigned beach. Bucklew and his team were assigned to theBucklew Mediterranean portion of the assault. After guiding the British 1 Commando to their beaches near Algiers, they found themselves having to go rescue the follow-on assault waves, whose inexperienced crews, lost in the dark and in heavy weather, had actually sailed seaward, away from the beaches. Bucklew's ship, the USS Leedstown, was soon sunk by a German U-boat. Bucklew and a few others were rescued by a Norwegian destroyer the next day and taken to the neutral port of Oran.

Altogether, the Scouts and Raiders earned eight Navy Crosses during Operation Torch. The men from this first class went on to support landings in Sicily, Salerno, Anzio, Normandy, and southern France.

 The Scouts and Raiders school moved to Fort Pierce, Fla., in fall 1942 and a second group of Scouts and Raiders graduated in July 1943, first seeing SR 1action in September 1943 at Finschafen, New Guinea, and later at Gasmata, Arawe and Cape Gloucester.

The third Scouts and Raiders unit operated in China with SACO, the Sino-American Cooperation Organization. This guerrilla unit of Americans and Chinese operated in coastal waters, lakes and rivers and used everything from steamboats to sampans. They conducted a survey of the upper Yangtze River and, disguised as coolies, conducted a detailed three-month survey of the Chinese coast from Shanghai to Kitchioh Wan, near Hong Kong. [Editors Note:SEAL Team TWO veteran Rudy Boesch, who went on to become the longest-serving enlisted man in the Navy at over 45 years, and the longest serving SEAL, retiring as a Master Chief Boatswain's Mate, began his career as a member of Amphibious Roger #5, the last Scouts and Raiders training class.]

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The Scouts and Raiders were disbanded after World War II, but the tactics they developed and the weapons they pioneered, along with those of the Navy Combat Demolitions Units, OSS Operational Swimmers, and Underwater Demolitions Teams, would form the core of what today is the U.S. Navy SEALs.
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Dave Thomas
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